Henry and Ireland

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  • Henry and Ireland
    • Reasons to go to Ireland
      • Discusses an expedition in 1155 in order to gain lands for his younger brother William, however has to focus on his assertion of royal authority in England  (dies 1163)
        • This is also supported by the Laudabiliter Papal Bull being issued in 1155, giving Henry II the ability to invade Ireland - Church wants to assert authority
      • Ireland was politically fragmented, thus an easy target but not difficult to control
        • Ireland had no armour and cavalry and thus vulnerable to the military ability of the Normans.
      • Tenant-in-chief Strongbow after being promised Aife, the daughter of Dermot Macmurragh of Leinster, became very interested in Ireland as after this marriage he would have to claims to rule, other Anglo-Norman lords were also interested.
        • This would be a threat to Henry's authority and thus he had to act.
      • 1169 - At Montmirail Henry is organising what he's going to do with his territories and publicly announces that John will inherit Ireland (John is born in 1166)
      • Takes the grant of the Laudabiliter which was issued in 1155 and in 1171 embarks on Campaign to Ireland in order to appease Christendom after the murder of Thomas Becket
      • Improve revenue: Expanded Henry's continental lands and improved trading links
    • Relations with Irish Nobility
      • Upon Henry's arrival, Rory O’Connor of Connacht rejected Henry’s claims to recognise his overlordship - King of Meath and Ulster supported Rory
      • Winter 1171-72: Henry held a synod of the Irish Church at Cashel. Accepted reforming canons in line with the papacy’s wishes
      • He left Ireland in 1172 with Strongbow in control of Meath and Leinster, and Rory still High-King
    • Invasions 1169 - 1171
      • Dermott Macmurrough seeks Henry's aid in 1167 as Dermot was driven out of Leinster after capturing Tiernan O'Rourkes wife and ****** her
        • Henry's reaction to request:  Dismissive - he had little interest in Ireland at that point in time; He did however allow Dermot to recruit a military force
          • ermot raised his force in South Wales and persuaded Richard FitzGilbert of Clare (notably Strongbow) to lead the invasion in return for his daughter, Aife' s hand in marriage
      • September 1170 - Dermott and the force led by Strongbow captured Dublin The success worried Henry as he thought many of his nobles would become excessively powerfulStrongbow inherited Dermott's role as king of Leinster
      • May 1171: Dermot McMurrough dies and fitz Gilbert may become king of Leinster - May establish separate kingdom that isn’t under Henry II’s rule - threat to his royal authority
    • 1170's
      • 1175 - Treaty of Windsor - This recognised Rory's right to his ancestral kingdom of Connacht, but retained direct Norman control over Meath and Leinster. Rory agreed to hold the rest of Ireland as Henry's vassal, and was given control of Limerick and Cork.
      • September 1172 - Henry II received confirmation from pope Alexander III that he was overlord of Ireland
      • The Irish Church was in need of reform, Gerard of Wales described it as barbarous and incestuous. In 1172 Henry meets with the Irish bishops and sends a letter to the pope in reference to implementing tax
      • From October 1171 until April 1172, Henry resided in Ireland as he wanted to avoid further Papal saction
        • He left Ireland in 1172 with Strongbow in control of Meath and Leinster, and Rory still High-King.
      • In 1177, Henry once again intervened, granting the lands of Thomond and Desmond to the Normans who had taken them and taking back control of Limerick and Cork.
        • Since Rory did not complain, this could be seen as Henry reasserting authority
    • How Henry dealt with the power-hungry barons intervening in Ireland
      • In early 1171 he placed an embargo on shipping between England and Ireland and ordered his vassals to return to England - to no avail; only Henry's personal intervention would prevent his vassals from carving out kingdoms of their own In Ireland
      • In October 1171, accompanied by a fleet of 500 knights  and numerous mounted and foot archers, he crossed from Milford Haven in Wales to Waterford in Ireland - the Norman barons at once submitted to their king (if they had done otherwise their lands in Wales and England would be put in jeopardy)
      • Henry was still able to establish a degree of angevin control: Leinster became a baring held by Strongbow from the king and the key towns of Dublin, Waterford and Wexford were to be held by Royal officials. Henry also bestowed Meath upon Hugh de Lacy. All were seen as fiefs for knight service and other feudal tenure


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